Madhava, Vidyaranya, Sringeri, and Kulke

Vidyasankar Sundaresan vsundaresan at HOTMAIL.COM
Thu Jun 15 22:31:54 UTC 2000

Some of my responses on this thread seem to have bitterly offended the
sensibilities of some readers. I am sorry that I snapped, but believe it or
not, I was neither weaned on the inter-matha polemic, nor does my reaction
to the contemporary popularity of the Kanchi Matha involve resentment or
frustration or envy. I don't wish to elaborate on the subject any more, at
least on this forum. I have various comments, both from a traditional
perspective and from a modern one. Interested readers may please visit
<>. This page will be around
for a month or so.

Nanda Chandran asks for what are primary sources and what are secondary
sources. I invite him to go through the sources listed in my previous mails
and to the references listed in them, so that he can decide for himself what
is primary, what is secondary and what the motivations/biases of the authors
are. Whatever I say about it will be seen as being colored by own
motivations and biases, so I prefer not to say any more about it.

As for texts, I will only say that hagiographies aside, I have yet to find a
single primary text which contains a reference to Mathas. Salutations to a
specific teacher or a general paramparA - yes. Specific mention of a Matha
at a particular location - no. This holds true even for a period in which we
know that such Mathas were active. There is almost no correlation between
the presence or importance of Mathas and evidence for them in the Advaita
texts, even in the post-Vidyaranya period. I expect this to be the same in
the pre-Vidyaranya period. If Nanda views this as indicating something about
the Sringeri Matha, such absence indicates the same thing about all other
Mathas, including the one at Kanchipuram.

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